Comms Connect New Zealand postponed until 2021

Comms Connect (WFevents)

By Jonathan Nally
Friday, 03 July, 2020

Comms Connect New Zealand postponed until 2021

Whilst the New Zealand event has been postponed until 2021, Comms Connect’s online events are booming.

The Comms Connect New Zealand 2020 conference and exhibition, which had been already postponed from May until October, has now had to be postponed further until May 2021, as the COVID-19 crisis and its attendant travel restrictions continue to wreak havoc on event plans worldwide.

Noting that the decision to reschedule the event from May until October 2020 had been “based on the best available information we had at that time”, the organisers have now announced that “the situation is still fluid and it has become clear that we have little more certainty about the months ahead. This obviously makes planning for an event of this nature extremely difficult.

“Given this, and given that we must all do our best to ensure the safety of our teams, our colleagues and our extended contact groups, we have to take what seems to be the only sensible decision available to us in postponing Comms Connect New Zealand until May 2021,” said Paul Davis, Director of WFevents.

Meanwhile, the ongoing series of Comms Connect online webinars and training workshops has been a great success. The Microwave Radio Masterclass in June was fully booked out well before commencement. But if you missed it, don’t despair — it will be repeated in August.

The Radio Communications 101 Workshop has proven very popular, so it will be run again in September. It comprises five, two-hour sessions run online over three weeks, and is designed for those who need to grasp the basics of radio communications, such as IT Managers given responsibility for infrastructure and those who are new to the radio and critical communications industry.

A webinar titled ‘Turning black spots into bright spots’ will be held in July. Featuring multiple presenters representing various verticals and perspectives, including public safety, power utilities and mining, as well as vendors, this online event will cover complementary technologies and solutions (eg, 4G/5G) that provide the opportunity to augment terrestrial radio availability, coverage and capacity, when the critical communications community needs it most.

There are also three completely new online leadership courses designed specifically for technical managers, specialist engineers and project managers.

The first, ‘Leading up and across: Influencing skills for technical leaders’, to be held in September, will provide a deep understanding of the true role and expectations of line bosses, as well as virtual bosses. It will provide practical tools and strategies to reduce organisational conflict from competing priorities from multiple bosses, and give strategies to effectively communicate and escalate issues and ideas.

The second, ‘Critical Conversations for technical people’, to be held in November, will provide a practical framework to help to plan and have a potentially emotional conversation with brutal honesty while protecting personal relationships. The practical framework-based structure with conversational models will help delegates to initiate critical conversations safely and provides recovery strategies to get the conversation back on a good footing when things go awry.

The third course is still being finalised. It will run in February and will be complementary to the other two leadership courses; keep an eye on the Comms Connect website for details.

Each weeklong leadership course will comprise 12 hours across four sessions, and will be led by Trevor Manning, Managing Director of TMC Global.

Full details of all Comms Connect events, live and virtual, can be found at

APCO 2020 cancelled, IWCE goes online

Most other communications industry events across the globe have also had to be postponed, cancelled or shifted to an online format.

In late June, the US-based Association of Public Communications Officers (APCO) announced that its annual conference — due to be held in Orlando, Florida in August — had been cancelled, citing government health requirements and an advisory against holding events with 50 or more attendees.

“With these new developments occurring… we decided that the prudent thing to do, to the disappointment of many, is to cancel our event,” said APCO International Executive Director & CEO Derek K Poarch.

“APCO appreciates your devotion and support of the association and public safety communications community. We look forward to seeing you in San Antonio, Texas, August 15–18, 2021…”

Meanwhile, the organisers of the IWCE have chosen to shift their event to an online format.

“With the prospect of physical gatherings unlikely in the coming months, we are excited to announce the launch of IWCE Virtual, a multi-day virtual experience to be held on August 24–27, 2020, that will allow our entire global community to participate,” the organisers said in statement posted on the event’s website.

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